Our day started with coffee and the weather on TV. The said ‘a chance of showers’ - well we had about four hours and four miles of cold showers, and of course wind. We drove from the hotel down to an area called ‘The Forks’, where the Assiniboine and the Red Rivers come together. This area is complete with the trendy food and shopping area, with Manitoba souvenirs and and local foods. After just a few minutes of checking it out, we began our walking tour of Winnipeg. As we crossed over the bridge spanning between Winnipeg proper and Old St. Boniface we met an energetic young man named Tal. He has been traveling the world for the past couple of years, blogging and photographing and telling stories. He said he is now working his way across Canada, his home country, as tourist information guy. His website can be seen here.
We moved on and toured a cathedral that has been reconstructed from the ruins left from an explosion. Part of the ruins still stand and are incorporated into the new structure. Back across the river we walked, head down and into the rain, to Upper Fort Garry, home long ago, to the Hudson Bay Company. From here we braved the wind and rain looking for the art museum. We found a building which was the Archive for the Hudson Bay Company, the fur company, not the chain stores of today. Here we chatted with he two guards - it was a hilarious few minutes. The told us we needed to visit ‘The Ledge’..?? — the legislature building..the State House.
From the Hudson Bay Archive we made our way down to the WAG, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, where a Picasso retrospective was showing. An amazingly great show. The WAG is also home to the largest collection of Inuit art, even more amazing stuff. When we left, the day had dried a bit and walking was easier, so we made our way to ‘The Ledge’. Here we discovered lots of young people dressed in tux’s and evening gowns another ??? Moment. Inquiring with the guard we discovered that this is graduation picture day, and apparent everyone gets dressed up and photographed at historic sites..this also explained a young girl in a fancy blue dress back at the cathedral.
The building was fantastic and a bit reminiscent of the Illinois State House. Back down trough town we found our way back to the Forks Marketplace, as earlier we spotted a Polish Pierogi stand…Pierogi dinners for two, yummy. A bit more shopping, some ice cream and back to the hotel for a restful night sleep. Below is a gallery of images from the day,
Click any image for a larger view.